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NASA's Spitzer Finds Hidden, Hungry Black Holes

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | News | Comments

Most of the biggest black holes in the universe have been eating cosmic meals behind closed doors – until now. With its sharp infrared eyes, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope peered through walls of galactic dust to uncover what may be the long-sought missing population of hungry black holes known as quasars.

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NASA's Chandra Neon Discovery Solves Solar Paradox

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | News | Comments

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory survey of nearby sun-like stars suggests there is nearly three times more neon in the sun and local universe than previously believed. If true, this would solve a critical problem with understanding how the sun works

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A Question of Timing

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by Randy C. Hice | Blogs | Comments

In retrospect, I was probably distracted by some petty work issues when I returned to my apartment that evening in 1978. It was just twilight, and I was in a deep funk, staring at the ground as I walked from my car toward the apartment entrance.

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Enabling Synchronicity in HPC Clusters

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by Kevin Shinpaugh, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

Streamlining for speed with InfiniBand technology Kevin Shinpaugh, Ph.D. Long accepted as an article of faith within the high-tech industry, Moore's Law (CPU performance doubles every 18 months, while the cost of components halves) brings many blessings, yet it also presents a special set of challenges as far as harnessing increased CPU horsepower to other components of the system. Today, a "nothing-special" desktop computer bought from a discount retailer contains the processing power of a 10-year-old supercomputer

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A Perspective on Drug Discovery Data Management, Integration and Access

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by Trevor W. Heritage | Articles | Comments

Effective management and analysis of electronic data has become a crucial determinant of success or failure Trevor W. Heritage In pursuit of new drugs, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies are today generating staggering amounts of data through the application of technologies such as high-throughput screening and parallel chemical synthesis. While data management systems are able to cope with the volume of data, serious challenges are presented by the varying data types and richer information coming from genetic, microarray, proteomic

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The TOP500 and Computational Science: A not-so-simple matter of software

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by Jack Dongarra, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

The TOP500 project was started in 1993 to provide a reliable basis for tracking and detecting trends in high-performance computing. Twice a year, a list of the sites operating the 500 most powerful computer systems is assembled and released. As predicted several years ago, only systems exceeding the one teraflop-per-second mark on the Linpack benchmark were able to enter the list

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The World’s Top 10 Supercomputers

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by Scientific Computing | Articles | Comments

A closer look at the most powerful commercially available computer systems The TOP500 project was started in 1993 to provide a reliable basis for tracking and detecting trends in high- performance computing. Twice a year, a list of the sites operating the 500 most powerful computer systems is assembled and released. Take a closer look at profiles of the top 10 systems appearing on the 25th TOP500 List released during ISC2005

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Look Who’s Talking

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | Articles | Comments

Spectral learning algorithm for speech separation Bill Weaver, Ph.D. I do not know the first thing about teaching science to the blind. Even my earliest course in problem solving begins with Step 1: Read the Problem; Step 2: Draw a Picture of the Situation — both initial steps inextricably associated with sight. I've exhausted cases of dry-erase markers and meters of chalk creating elaborate diagrams on the board

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The Legacy of Microsoft .NET: Delphi 2005 fully integrates .NET programming components

July 31, 2005 8:00 pm | by John R. Joyce, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

Okay, the main focus of this column is not Microsoft .NET, but it does have a role to play, so please hang in there. I suppose the best place to start is with the question, What is Microsoft .NET? Unfortunately, that is a much more difficult question to answer than one might expect. The reason being that Microsoft’s marketing department has on occasion managed to apply the name

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Catching Up with Chuck Johnson

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | Articles | Comments

An early innovator shares his insights and vision for the future of mathematics Scientific Computing recently caught up with Charles "Chuck" W. Johnson, an early mathematics innovator, MIT alumni and Corporation Development Committee member, and founder of Visual Numerics (formerly IMSL). During our exchange, Chuck talked about his role in evolving mathematics and statistics into mainstream business analytics, as well as the profound changes the mathematics industry has seen over the past 50 years.

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The Unscrambler: A Different Approach to Multivariate Data Analysis and Experimental Design

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | by John A. Wass, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

This is a program you may hate the first few hours and love forever after John A. Wass, Ph.D. Unscrambler is specifically directed to multivariate analysis and experimental design, with emphasis on problems in chemistry and industrial production. It is one of the more unusual packages that I have seen in terms of its logic and, in this regard, may be a welcome change

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The Importance of Nothing... Identifying character errors through font substitution

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | by John R. Joyce, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

No! Calm down, this isn't going to be a nihilist diatribe, I have something much more concrete in mind — data validation, in fact. Hang in there, you'll see the connection soon. The bane of the laboratory is data entry errors. These can take many forms, sometimes they are simple transcription errors, sometimes it is a substitution error, where one character is mistaken

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When Push Comes to Shove

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | by Bill Weaver, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

Quantum imaging with magnetic resonance force microscopy Bill Weaver, Ph.D. The amount of force required to press the keys of a computer keyboard is around 1 newton (N). That’s about the force provided by a pad of Post-it notes as it mistakenly rests on your spacebar, filling the buffer until your computer emits a barrage of clicks for help. On the high side of things, the world-record holder

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Mathematics and Biology: Toxicogenomics as the New Frontier

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | by John A. Wass, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

The latest installment of my crusade to bring the biologists and mathematicians/statisticians together was given a small assist from a very interesting and scientifically "hot" area known as toxicogenomics. Recently, Morgan et. Al .[1] had published a paper entitled "Complementary Roles for Toxicologic Pathology and Mathematics in Toxicogenomics

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My New Laptop Does Not Have Any RS232 Ports & #151 What Should I Do??

June 30, 2005 8:00 pm | by Thomas Lutz | Articles | Comments

Easy solutions for connecting to a USB port Thomas Lutz Although USB stands for “universal serial bus,” the USB interface does not work anything at all like a standard RS232 serial port. Like RS232 serial ports, the USB ports on a PC are designed for interfacing external devices. However, any piece of equipment that is designed to connect to a USB port must come with a Windows device driver that essentially informs

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